Dallas, Part 1

Wow. This was a day of love and good karma. Texas has an extraordinary music scene, period.
First, the morning.
Guided by our local guardian angel, Kim Young to whom I will be forever grateful, I spent the morning at Booker T. Washington high school. Probably the nation’s most productive music magnet school, whose alums include Erykah Badhu, Norah Jones, and countless others.


booker-students.jpg
A hearty thanks to our incredible host, music director Kent Ellingson, who somehow managed to steer us through the morning while juggling umpteen simultaneous commitments.
The first class was midi ensemble – a twelve piece synth-vocal-jazz-pop-funk band. Watched them run through some great original tunes. Some seriously accomplished musicians. Four-part vocal harmony over a 6 piece synth section.
booker-rehearsal.jpg
Then sat down with Otis Gray (Latin music director) and a group of students to talk about music careers. Great to spend time with budding young musicians from all disciplines.
Topped the morning off with Bart Marantz and his six-piece jazz ensemble that is heading to the San Jose Jazz Festival. Packed with talent – and great to see the mentoring provided by a long time performer/educator like Bart. Advice and guidance that could only come from a seasoned player. Good luck you guys.
jazz-ensemble.jpg
I was reminded of just how powerful the arts are in development and maturation of young kids. There’s so much for youth in learning to play an instrument: discipline (practice), creativity, teamwork (ensemble play), physical coordination and dexterity, planning & execution (learning new pieces), public performance…
Had lunch with Mike Orren and his partner, founder of texasgigs.com, another great music portal focused on local talent. Their userbase is growing fast and they’re adding layers of great features for artists – gig schedules, live podcasts, video podcasts, promotions tools… I think we’re going to start seeing a growing number of these companies intensely focused on serving local musicians. who don’t really have these resources.
Second half of the day to follow.

Pandora

The Pandora Team http://www.pandora.com/

12 thoughts on “Dallas, Part 1

  1. I’ve been listening to Pandora for the past 6 hours, I have no idea how I enjoyed music without it. I predict, that once this thing gets national attention, it will become as big as internet standards such as AIM, and Internet Explorer!

  2. Im sooo excited…..i’ve been using pandora for a long time and i go to school at booker t. washington…what an experience

  3. Hey…Thanks a lot for the music! I work on a small island in Gozo (next to Malta), staring at a screen all day and YOU GUYS keep me sane (to a degree). THANKS A LOT! Just an idea; I know you have the button of “I don’t like,” How about a button that blanks out music from a particular band as some of the rythms are the same as other bands but the singing is bad in one…just an idea. Keep it up, rock on!

  4. Hi Eliet,
    Sadly, we can only legally offer Pandora services to residents of the United States at this time. Audio content streaming regulations differ from country to country, and we are still working on acquiring the proper licenses to outside of the United States.
    Its frustrating for us too, especially now that we have so many fans in other countries. Unfortunately, we don’t have a set date as to when this will be finalized. However, expect it to be big news when it happens. Keep checking blog.pandora.com for updates.

  5. wow! pandora is awesome! i have learned about countless new artist and now enjoy music in a totally different way. pandora in always playing something fresh and original, or playing an old favourite.
    thank you so much for providing this free music player to the world.. you are uniting us as we speak.
    i also find your tour of the southern US to be very interesting.
    well, much love and i wish y’all safe travels.
    peace from london ontario canada.

  6. looks like you found your way to my old high school. sadly that school isn’t like it used to be. but if you were still impressed, it must not be too far in decline. and i also went to loyola in new orleans for university…looks like you found one of my favorite local acts. papa grows funk got me through some of the toughest exams :)

  7. What a treasure find! I lucked across Pandora one night and haven’t been able to tear myself away. It’s like a breath of fresh air in the stale world of commercial radio. It’s wonderful to hear new music that isn’t played on the “payed to play ” formats. I’ve told everybody I know about Pandora and my friends are freakin!! Thanks so much!

  8. I have been talking to my friends about Pandora and they are enjoying very much. I’m impressed with Pandora. I stayed in Dallas in April 2002 and I loved that City.

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